by Tim "Magic" Hughes, PhhhD
Running in the hallowed footsteps of HHH founder "Albert G" Gispert, I first coursed Malaysia's spectacular and undulating green palm oil estates and rubber plantations over the Easter holidays in 1980. This was my first Interhash, where I demolished a lot of Anchor Beer, in superb company, despite Sunday's torrential rainstorm at the on-on.
I knew of the earlier attempt to form the Bangkok Hash in 1969. The Royal Bangkok Sports Club rugby captain was a former HHH Singapore joint master. He invited me take over his house for the duration of a four month home leave. Had I known more at the time, I might well have tackled my first trail in Penang, Malaysia later that year.
Usually it takes a person more than the first invitation to try us out. To the more sedentary individual, totally unfamiliar with the hashing concept, drinking beer and running cross-country do not match. Better explained, hashing is really a most useful aerobic session, lasting just over the hour at your own pace. A novel sight-seeing tour is part of the game. A very lively social session follows. And as we all know there is plenty of water, soft drinks, beer, beer and beer available. The impromptu entertainment, often carrying over through dinner, completes the hash recipe.
The event was so much to my liking that I have gone on to participate in nine consecutive biennial Interhash meets to date. Having travelled to each venue more than once, usually for a pre-event recce visit, a Kuala Lumpur hasher calls me the most travelled Interhasher in the world. The 60th Diamond Jubilee Homecoming Celebration in KL is set for October 2-4, 1998, and that should make it ten out of eleven. I even remember them! Unfortunately hepatitis struck me down in 1978 when for almost one year I could neither take exercise nor drink alcohol.
Only five stalwarts remain who have "done them all" since the inaugural Unconvention was staged at Hong Kong in 1978. Here is a fine opportunity to warmly salute you alphabetically: Chee-bye (Petaling Jaya Animals & Hazards H3), Drainoil (Hong Kong, Weybridge, Barnes H3s), Filthy (Jakarta, Melbourne H3s), Whorator (Jakarta, Pattaya & Toowoomba H3s) and The Wolf (Kuala Lumpur, Karachi & Oslo H3s).
Harrier International's mission has always been to try to gather and record anything and everything about hash and hashing into one place - well 11 books - The World Hash Handbook & Directory being the most familiar to interhashers. Obviously an impossible dream. Because so many different people squirrel away various pieces of the puzzle in separate places, the full global picture could never be completed satisfactorily.
In early 1995, at the Malaysian GMs Meeting at the Anchor Brewery Pub, Mother Hash's joint master Patrick "Mabukthigh" Coyle once again entreated hashers worldwide to recognize HI's database as the central point for contact information. Specifically and sensibly, this is targeted to reduce the wastage involved in event promotional mailing expenses. Interhash events in Pattaya '86; Bali '88; Manila '90; Phuket '92; Rotorua '94; Limassol '96; Kuala Lumpur '98, (plus several unfortunately unsuccessful bids over the last decade), have consecutively relied on the HI database to promote their event. HI knows exactly what it is doing right in this regard. My sincere thanks go to the many international, regional, national and local On Secs and publishers who have rallied around the cause and assisted over the years.
Another 250 or so new kennels have appeared on the scene since Alex the Bear chaired that wonderfully beery meeting in KL. About 1,500 chapters change their mismanagement at least annually - equivalent to an average of about four changes every day. That is why HI is now here on the Internet (at last you say!) to help better serve your voracious appetite for more accurate contacts; far slicker data collection, collation and presentation; valuable information and much of the trademark trivia you expect and always receive from HI. Oh! you say. And the usual occasional bullshit. That is why YOU provide your own beer. This is really YOUR database.
In the several years of working very closely together, HI and KLH3 have continued to greatly reduce postal cost waste. We have generally achieved an excellent, laser-like mailing focus. Returned Interhash mail is the one sure way to get your hash temporarily deleted from the database. Getting a hash reinstated, however, is not such a quick or simple exercise. If you have not been getting your mail then simply click on SUBMIT and fill in this form now.
June 1997. Enter Harrier International's powerful HHH search engine web site resource, offering the ultimate opportunity to improve communication that extra little bit more. We are moving ever closer to the year A.D. 2000 and the next millennium. By then, fully electronic communication will have been achieved for the Hash. I feel confident and sincerely believe that with your help, we shall eventually get everything online at The Internet HHH Home Page for the benefit of us all and future generations of hashers. Already we have improving regional and national links and a common goal.
Today you can help realise this wish for both HI and the Hash House Harriers Kuala Lumpur (The Mother Hash). We finally just got tired of returned envelopes and mailing half-assed Hash On Secs with no fixed abode!
A little tale with which to close.
Over breakfast back in April 1986, I asked original hashman, Frederick "Horse" Thomson what was the original charter of the Hash House Harriers? It had been asked to comply with the Registrar of Societies requirements?
With his characteristic lofty equine look and that impish smile he replied: "Oh the objectives. We had to fill in all these forms. It was really a pain in the ass. The HHH had no rules, membership and dues. Cecil Lee and I conferred and wrote down on the application - The reason for the Hash is to get as pissed as possible, in as many local Chinese suburbs of Kuala Lumpur as often as possible".
I often think back somewhat wryly on that conversation. Without saying the obvious (but then I do have your attention): Drive, ride and walk carefully. We have unnecessarily lost a lot of great characters in accidents perhaps attributed to the holy nectar. In these times, fewer and fewer hashers can really enjoy a dozen down-downs in a jungle clearing, then have the knowledge and luxury of their drivers taking them home to their loved ones!
Thank you for registering your Hash today. I'll be "checking" on you regularly.
Greatly looking forward to meeting you on a trail near you (or me), or a future event sometime soon!
Tim MAGIC Hughes, PhhhD
Publishare, Edithare and HHHashtorian
Harrier International since 1984-ish
(Or was it '82? Old Timer's disease probably setting in! Anyway, the idea was 1980. I had to find out more about this hashing thing. Then I just had to tell someone else what I had discovered. Hashing in dust storms of the Sahara Desert, Antarctic blizzards, tropical typhoons and hurricanes, war zones, after curfews and more. Even Essex girls do it. Great, isn't it?)
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Scott "Beaver Bam Bam Balls" Kanzelmeyer